Hong Kong Protesters Stop Demonstrations to Remember 9/11 Victims
Activists act in solidarity against terrorism on September 11
Protesters in Hong Kong announced they would be halting demonstrations to remember the 18th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on the United States, according to reports.
The Chinese state-run media ironically accused the activists of planning 9/11-style terrorist attacks themselves, complete with photos of the planes striking the Twin Towers in 2001.
According to a statement from the protest organizers, it read:
“In solidarity against terrorism, all forms of protest in Hong Kong will be suspended on Sept. 11, apart from potential singing and chanting."
The statement then denounced Beijing’s state-run China Daily for a Facebook post warning that anti-government fanatics are "planning massive terror attacks, including blowing up gas pipes, in Hong Kong on September 11.”
“The 9/11 terror plot also encourages indiscriminate attacks on non-native speakers of Cantonese and starting mountain fires," the China Daily reported.
"This leaked information was part of the strategy being schemed by radical protesters in their online chat rooms,” it added.
The post was accompanied with a photo of al-Qaeda’s hijacked planes slamming into the World Trade Center on 9/11.
China Daily responded to the backlash of the post by publishing a screenshot that allegedly showed protesters using the encrypted messaging service Telegram to discuss “killing people if their demands are not met,” according to tot he characterization of the South China Morning Post.
But the paper failed to offer any evidence for the claim of a 9/11 terrorist plot in Hong Kong, and also refused to answer any other questions about their claims.
Unsurprisingly, Facebook also refused to comment on whether China Daily’s post violated its policies.
Hong Kongers called China Daily's smear as disrespectful, “horribly wrong,” and “inflammatory propaganda."
Some also speculated if the Chinese Communist Party may try to stage a terrorist attack with “undercover actors” and blame it on the protest movement.
“We don’t even need to do a fact check to know that this is fake news,” a young protester told Reuters.
“The state media doesn’t care about its credibility. Whenever something they claimed to have heard on WhatsApp or friends’ friends, they will spread it right away.”
“When they try to frame the whole protest with those words, it alarms me. They are predicting rather than reporting,” another protester said.
“We honor those who died in the attacks, and all those sacrificed in the fight against all forms of terrorism,” said a supporter responding to the statement that protests would be temerity stopped.
Other supporters also noted that the has been very pro-American and eager to enlist U.S. assistance against oppressive Chinese tyranny, so it would not be appropriate to behave offensively on 9/11.
The protest movement paused the demonstrations by circulating the statement calling for one on social media.